Weekend Wit: The spirit of Christmas
Ho ho ho, (are we still allowed to say that?) it’s almost another year gone and Christmas is right about to peak! Parents are frantically wrapping all those gifts to slide under the tree labelled “From Santa”. The family Christmas party is all planned, including transport to pick up poor old nanna from her forgotten nursing home. For whoever has the courage to escape, their travel plans are all booked and basically everyone is buzzing around like it’s the second coming of Christ.
When you stop and think about it though, the true meaning of Christmas has basically been bypassed for this commercialised reality, we all now experience as Christmas. TV ads are pushing more and more must have items down our throats. Then they throw in finance commercials to counteract the fact that 90 percent of the population has just maxed out their credit cards.
Then there are the ‘plan for next years Christmas’ messages, before any of us have actually gotten through this one! No wonder the suicide rates boom this time of year. It really is enough to push financially strained individuals over the edge. Plus, there’s no end in sight! Year after year people are subjected to this commercialisation of Christmas and, need I say, it’s only going to get worse.
Now I’ve often thought about approaching the family and saying, “Christmas is a time for being together, to celebrate, eat, drink, rejoice and by-the-way, next year there will be no presents. Not a one. So, heartily enjoy what you got this year because that’s it. I’m out.” I’d bet good money that next year’s Christmas invitation will somehow go missing and I’d be labelled the family Grinch!
Despite the fact that most of us are well and truly over this commercialization, very few of us have the balls to do anything about it. As a society we have successfully set ourselves up to endure this and the true meaning of Christmas is slipping further and further into the ibis.
It does make me wonder though, when this commercialisation began? How did it replace the true spirit of Christmas? Which evil soul or souls thought, “Mmm, Christmas, how can we profit from this annual event? How do we get everyone to spend their hard earned cash, regardless of their religious affiliations?”
Can you picture the scenario? A few business men sat around in their suits and wanted to boost profits, so they called in the advertising gurus who came up with the campaign of a lifetime. Together they made Christmas a commercial event most of us now participate in. They managed to completely bypass all religious considerations. It didn’t matter if people believe in God and Jesus or not. From that day forward Christmas became all about the money; profit making and pumping money into the economy. Talk about a marvelous campaign!
So, in a few days most of us will celebrate Christmas. Yes the credit cards are maxed out, the gifts will be piled high under lavishly decorated tress, seafood and fine food will complete the picture. The kids will open gift number 10 and look to you as if to say, “Is that it?” Glory be the spirit of Christmas. Whatever it’s been created to mean?!
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